Recipes From Living the American Backwoods Cabin Life

Easy Peasy Smoky Pea Soup in a Slow Cooker

This is my favorite pea soup. If you let it sit in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight, the soup will thicken up to where your saltines will stand up in the soup!

Below are the easy peasy (couldn't help myself) steps.

As always a link to the printable recipe will be available after the steps or if you want to bypass the steps, click HERE.

Soak a 16-ounce bag of dry split peas in two quarts of water for 2 or more hours.

Stir them up a bit so they don't stick together.

Prepare 6-quart slow cooker crock with cooking spray.

Place a rinsed ham hock into the slow cooker.

Add your rinsed peas,



minced garlic,

low sodium chicken broth,

1 teaspoon liquid smoke,

1 bay leaf,

1 teaspoon dry thyme leaves,

pepper to taste,

and salt to taste.

Mix it all up,

cover, and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4 hours.

Now one step I forgot to take pictures of is what to do with the ham hock when the soup is finished. Take it out of the soup and let it cool. Once it is easy to handle, pick the meat off the ham hock, cut into small pieces and place back into the soup and stir.

You can throw away the bones and skin.

Note: I always make this soup a day ahead and let it thicken in the refrigerator overnight. Turns out to be thick as fog, or is that thick as pea soup?

Easy Peasy Smoky Pea Soup in a Slow Cooker

The title says it all! Great winter night comfort food and oh so thick it will stick to yer bones!

Prep: 15 minutes                         Level: Easy
Cook: 4 hours or 8 1/2 hours     Serves: 6

  • 1 ham hock (about 3 pounds or 2 weighing 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 16 oz. dry split peas
  • 3 cups carrots, diced 
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 32-ounce box low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dry thyme leaves
  • salt and pepper to taste

Soak peas in water for 2 or more hours. Drain. Rinse the ham hock and place into a cooking spray prepared 6-quart slow cooker. Follow with the peas, carrots, onion, garlic, broth, bay leaf, thyme, and salt and pepper. Mix. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4 hours. Remove the ham hock with tongs and set aside to let cool. When cooled, pick off the meat, chop into small pieces and put into the soup and stir. Throw away the skin and bones.

Substitutions for the ham hock: smoked sausage cut into 1" pieces, smoked ham in chunks, smoky bacon cut into pieces. You may need to add more salt to your taste.

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